New Edinburgh College Development Trust patron

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Richard Demarco announced as Edinburgh College Development Trust patron

 Edinburgh College Development Trust has announced Scottish artist Professor Richard Demarco CBE as its first patron.

The Development Trust, an independent charity which supports Edinburgh College students through providing enhanced opportunities and experiences, welcomes Richard Demarco as its first patron following his previous involvement with the charity as a member.

The artist and promoter of the visual and performing arts was announced as patron during a reception hosted by the charity at Edinburgh College’s EH15 restaurant.

Professor Demarco has been an influential figure in the Edinburgh art scene for more than 50 years and co-founded Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre in 1963 before establishing the Richard Demarco gallery three years later.

As patron he joins the charity in its aim to make a real difference to students in Edinburgh and the Lothians through providing new opportunities to enhance their college experience.

He said: “I was honoured to be asked to be the first patron of the Development Trust after having been a member for almost four years. The work it does to support students across Edinburgh and the Lothians is of prime importance.

“In a world where education must cater for an international body of students and help them to thrive, organisations such as the Development Trust are essential in providing extra support and opportunities.”

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Since its formation in 2014 the charity has supported many Edinburgh College students through providing grants and scholarships for a range of college projects. These include supporting Professional Cookery students to hone their specialist skills working alongside patisserie chefs in Paris kitchens and a Classical Music students’ tour of the Highlands.

During the relaunch reception, students from the college’s Professional Cookery course cooked and served canapés to guests while they listened to live music played by Classical Music students. Guests were also treated to handmade chocolates produced by Patisserie and Confectionery students.

The appointment of Richard Demarco as patron comes as the Development Trust sets out its new vision to respond to the needs of students at Edinburgh College.

Edinburgh College Development Trust Chair Dr Allan Colquhoun said: “The Development Trust is very pleased to have Richard on board as our first patron at a time when we are refocusing our work to better support the needs of today’s students.

“As part of the new vision for the Development Trust we are working on a host of initiatives which aim to help students in developing employability and life skills and in promoting positive mental wellbeing.”

HND Classical Music student Keith Murray, who performed at the launch and took part in the music tour of the Highlands said: “It was great to have an opportunity to tour the Highlands with the help of funding from the Development Trust. I enjoyed playing at different venues and to different audiences each night alongside my class mates and lecturers.”

The Development Trust is currently looking for volunteers to join its board of trustees. For more information visit www.ecdevelopmenttrust.org.uk.

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